Eurovision Match Report – The first semi-final

There may be some of you out there that think it was an Eastern European stitch up and your minds are not going to be changed by anything us sensible sorts say. However, keep an open mind here.

Firstly, there was nothing in that Semi Final that failed to surprise anyone. As we all know, the first semi was considerably weaker than the second one is going to be and, as such, as a fan base we should be happy with what got through.

The predictable got through, and rightly so. Russia, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Greece, Bosnia – all got through on their merits ( whatever they may be) and did, in the final analysis, deserve to get there.

Norway forced its way into the final on the back of damn good performances through the whole of the week. This song improved dramatically from rehearsal number one from a song that stunk, to a song that had all the looks of a qualifier. The same could also be said about Israel – a song that surprised a lot of people by how good it got towards the end.

Romania qualified because it was a nice, television friendly Ballad.

Poland, we think, must be the jury score as that is the only one we were slightly confused about. Her teeth were possibly the best thing in the song but I think the jury friendly-ness of this song might have saved her.

And then, there is Finland. 12th in the OGAE fan vote – but 10 respected journalists from the serviette of death part A had this qualifying. It does, however, pose YLE a problem, “why can we only do well with Rock?”. Not a bad question to be posed I guess in a country where rock sells – but who’d have thunk that rock was going to do well in this contest 3 years ago. How times have changed.

Spare some change and a thought for Netherlands and Belgium. Both songs were good in their own right but missed out for one reason or another. Perhaps it’s time for both of the respective broadcasters to think that they need a good song in this contest?? Also spare some thoughts for Ireland. RTE have now tried the joke song, and it got what the skeptics thought it would get. Now it’s out of their system, I recommend its back to what they know please!!

So there we have it…. Nine songs have been eliminated and, on balance, I suspect the Ten best songs have got through to the final. I am a little disappointed that Belgium or The Netherlands didn’t get through, but hey – so are they.

I am sure that the people with the East-o-vision bias have had this confirmed this evening – however, there is still 2 more nights to go – and as I said right at the top of the post – “Old Eurovision” is still winning 8-7.